Monthly Archives: January 2016

Jan 31

Episode 5 – Compilation Engagements Using SSARS 21

By Charles Hall | SSARS

This week we look at how compilation engagements have changed from SSARS 19 to SSARS 21. We also discuss what compilation engagement elements have not changed. We conclude by providing an overview of the objectives and requirements of the new compilation standard.

An overview of the podcast is as follows:

  • What are the key changes in compilation engagements?
  • What has not changed?
  • What are the objectives of a compilation?
  • What procedures must be performed?
Jan 27

Episode 4 – Questions and Answers for the New SSARS 21 Preparation of Financial Statements Standard

By Charles Hall | Accounting and Auditing , SSARS

CPAs have had many questions about the use of AR-70, Preparation of Financial Statements. Those questions include:

When is the standard applicable?

What work papers must I retain?

Is an engagement letter required?

What should the preparation report look like?

Should I include a disclaimer page?

How do I communicate departures from the applicable basis of accounting?

Can I add supplementary information?

Can AR-C 70 be used in reference to prescribed forms?

Today we answer your most pressing questions about using the SSARS 21 preparation standard.

Jan 09

Why Confirming the Receipt of a Message is Important

By Charles Hall | Accounting and Auditing

Do you ever send a message and not receive one back (though you expected one)? How does it make you feel? Conversely, do you sometimes receive a message acknowledging the receipt of your communication. Feel any different?

Picture courtesy of

Picture courtesy of

Appropriately responding to messages does two things:

  1. Reduces confusion
  2. Demonstrates respect

Sometimes we don’t acknowledge the receipt of a message because the sender did not request a response. Even without the request, it is a good practice to let the sender know you received the communication, and, if necessary, that you know what to do. Even a short text or email that says, “received your message,” is helpful.

What if you are copied on an email asking that a task be performed? Should you contact the main addressee? To avoid confusion, it is often  wise to contact the other person that received the email to clarify who is going to perform the task. Then let the original sender know who is performing the task and when it will be completed.

Jan 08

Why Your Independence Might Be Impaired (By Nonattest Services)

By Charles Hall | Auditing

A CPA’s independence can be impaired by performing nonattest services. 

Cause of Independence Impairment

The AICPA Code of Conduct requires that clients accept responsibility for nonattest services if attest services are also provided. Why? If the client has no one to assume responsibility (for the nonattest work), then the auditor could be performing management responsibilities that impair independence.

Nonattest Examples

What are some examples of nonattest services?

Documentation of SKE

The client should appoint someone with appropriate skill, knowledge, and experience (sometimes referred to as SKE) to oversee nonattest services provided by the public accounting firm. The CPA firm should document their consideration of independence — usually in the enagagement letter and/or a memorandum. Document the nonattest services to be provided and the client personnel overseeing the work. It is helpful to also document the skill, knowledge, and experience of the designated person. What is their educational background? How long have they served in their role? Do they have any certifications (e.g., CPA, CISA)? What qualifies the designated (client) person to oversee the nonattest service performed by the attest firm?

AICPA independence

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